Marvelous Girl Has Moved!

“Necessity gifts” topping the list this holiday

Posted on: December 9, 2009

For the second year running, this will be a make or break holiday for retailers, as many cannot survive another season of suppressed sales.  With total gift sales forecasted to decline 2.6 percent this Christmas season, “necessity gift” like clothing will be the only growth category, according to industry research IBISWorld.

“Clothing is the only gift category to see growth this year because it serves a dual purpose,” said Toon van Beeck, senior analyst with IBISWorld.  “Parents are using this Christmas season as an excuse to update their children’s wardrobes, still filling space under the tree and ultimately saving money in the long run.”

As the biggest retail category, clothing represents 18.6 percent of total Christmas gift sales in 2009, at $81.91 billion.  Discount and convenient retailers like Zappos and Kohl’s will continue to see strong sales volumes, as consumers move away from higher-end goods to more value-added purchases.

However, brand name products and celebrity labels are going to fare poorly this year, while basic clothing items are expected to perform well.  Overall, clothes are expected to rebound from their dismal performance a year ago – which was among the worst Christmas retailing seasons this century.

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